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Expats - How to Deal With Ungrateful Family Members

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Expats - How to Deal With Ungrateful Family Members

Postby globetrotter » Sun Jan 23, 2011 9:24 am

I am visiting relatives on the US East Coast and it seems that no one can be bothered to pick me up from the airport.

A rental car would be best.

Everyone is busy, has things to do, don't you know.

Who else deals with relatives 'Back Home' and what do you guys do?

I am getting mighty pissed off and this trip is looking to not turning out well from many angles.

I am spending my holiday, my accrued year's savings, and 7,000 miles to go see them.

You would think they would be able to adjust their schedule as I have adjusted mine.

I could be on a beach rather than the icey cold of Pennsylvania.

What do you other expats do?
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Re: Expats - How to Deal With Ungrateful Family Members

Postby Rock » Sun Jan 23, 2011 10:05 am

globetrotter wrote:I am visiting relatives on the US East Coast and it seems that no one can be bothered to pick me up from the airport.

A rental car would be best.

Everyone is busy, has things to do, don't you know.

Who else deals with relatives 'Back Home' and what do you guys do?

I am getting mighty pissed off and this trip is looking to not turning out well from many angles.

I am spending my holiday, my accrued year's savings, and 7,000 miles to go see them.

You would think they would be able to adjust their schedule as I have adjusted mine.

I could be on a beach rather than the icey cold of Pennsylvania.

What do you other expats do?


As you build a new life in China, many components of your old life may forget you. Being abroad for long periods of time tests relationships, even those with family members.

My default response is to spend more time with those who demonstrate sincere interest in maintaining the relationship and much less with those who don't. However, there are circumstantial exceptions. I imagine aging parents might be one. If the parents become very cranky, difficult, and unreasonable in old age, they get a full pass. With siblings, I have less tolerance unless they've had special struggles or issues. With extended relatives and close friends, I let them set the tone and pretty much return what I get.

If things get really bad there, perhaps you can find a cheap flight and jump on a plane to Florida / Colombia / or any other place you feel like going. Good to have a Plan B.
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Depends

Postby Asia Outback » Sun Jan 23, 2011 6:57 pm

Go with Rock on that one I think...depends on the circumstances as well, but if there are a number of relatives close by and no one can be bothered to pick you up...? Hmmmm ...might be time to evaluate things. Now in the case of aging parents for example, that would be different. If you go through with it..freeze your ass off...and it all around sucks...next year you can head for a white beach somewhere
with a nice brown tart to tend to you.

You will find that many if not all of your relatives have little interest in your life overseas. In fact, many will find it threatening and do not want to hear about it. For my part, if I have someone coming to see me, I will do everything I can to be the one picking them up. It is not about the money- cab or shuttle fares, but the sense of hospitality to show someone a genuine welcome. I'm there at the gate to collect them and carry their bag for them.

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Re: Depends

Postby globetrotter » Sun Jan 23, 2011 9:55 pm

Asia Outback wrote:Go with Rock on that one I think...depends on the circumstances as well, but if there are a number of relatives close by and no one can be bothered to pick you up...? Hmmmm ...might be time to evaluate things

It is not about the money- cab or shuttle fares, but the sense of hospitality to show someone a genuine welcome.


Good points.

If I fly across the planet and no one can be bothered to pick me up, that says more than a book of words can.

Actions speak louder than words.

No hospitality - none?
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Postby momopi » Mon Jan 24, 2011 6:40 am

Look on the bright side, at least the East Coast won't be as cold as Ontario Canada. I'm in North Bay (about 4 hrs north of Toronto) right now and it's -29 C. LoL. Tomorrow during the day will be um... -26 C.
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Postby Asia Outback » Mon Jan 24, 2011 7:22 am

GT-

That seems pretty harsh that no one will offer to pick you up. Do you have to make the trip?
Is it time to grow a new branch on the family tree? I come from a pretty cold family, but a wife and two
very good kids later, I can see that I have really broken that mold.


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Postby Winston » Mon Jan 24, 2011 8:49 am

Globe, if they won't even bother picking you up at the airport, why do you want to bother seeing them? Did they invite you?

Are you arriving at a convenient time for them, such as after working hours or on a weekend?

You don't have to rent a car. US airports usually have buses or shuttles into town. Where will you be staying?
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Postby Mr S » Mon Jan 24, 2011 10:02 am

If no one from your family can rearrange for a pickup and no one was willing to at least help reimburse your travel expenses from the airport to wherever you were staying I'd say f**k'em and move on with your life. If they can't appreciate you visiting from living thousands of miles away then that means they have already gone on with their lives without you in the picture. I would just start living your new life overseas and move away from being too involved in family matters unless it's dealing with death or something similarly serious.

I've been living far from my family ever since I moved out of my house to join the Navy at 19. But even then at least someone from my family is still willing to pick me up at the airport.

Sorry to say but there is something wrong with your family there...
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